40. Health / Feeling ill – Phrasal Verbs & Expressions

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This episode is filled with vocabulary relating to health, feeling ill, catching a cold and common symptoms. Luke’s English Podcast is a free service for people who are learning English as a foreign language. Download each episode free. Subscribe to the podcast using iTunes. Use it to practise listening, develop vocabulary and learn about the culture of the English language. Luke is well qualified and has lots of experience of teaching English for general life and for business/legal purposes. This podcast is designed to be useful, but also entertaining and fun.

Here are the lyrics to the “Feeling Sick Rap”

I’m sick, I’m sick
I’m under the weather
But in a few days
I’m gonna feel better

I’ve been coughing and sneezing
all day and all night
But don’t worry about me
I’m gonna be alright

Cos (because) I think I’m coming down with a cold
It gets worse and worse, the more you get old

My doctor told me
It’s gonna be fine Luke
It’s just a cold
You’re not suffering from swine flu!

Here’s a list of the phrasal verbs and expressions I teach in this episode.

To be under the weather – To feel a bit ill / have a cold because of the weather
To be off colour – To feel a bit ill
To pick something up – to catch something “I picked up a cold last week”
To come down with something – To catch something “I think I’m coming down with a cold”
To look after someone – To take care of someone
To fight something off – To try your best to get better “I’m trying to fight off my cold by going to work”
To shake something off – To try to get better “I’ve been trying to shake off this cold for days and days”
To pass out – To faint / suddenly fall asleep from weakness or sickness
To throw up – to vomit / to puke
To swell up / swollen – to expand because there’s a problem with it “My glands have swollen up”

Here’s the conversation which includes the list of symptoms. To get definitions of the symptoms, you’ll have to listen to the podcast:

Friend: Hi, how’s it going?

Luke: Oh, not too good really

Friend: No, you sound a bit ill

Luke: Yeah, I’m a bit under the weather actually

Friend: Oh really? What’s the matter?

Luke: Oh, I think I’ve got flu or a cold or something, I don’t know

Friend: Really? What are your symptoms?

Luke: Just the usual things, you know. A sore throat, a headache, a cough, aches and pains, cold chills, a stomach ache, it hurts when I swallow, my glands are swollen up, I’ve been throwing up quite a lot, I’m sneezing all the time, I’ve got a stiff neck and a bad back, my lips are dry, I feel a bit dizzy, I’m losing my voice, I’ve got gas and indigestion, I’ve got diarrhea, my joints ache, I’ve lost my appetite and I don’t have any energy or enthusiasm for anything really, my hands are shaking, I feel drowsy, I’m wheezing quite a lot, I’ve got a lot of phlegm and catarrh, I get cold sweats at night, I’ve got lots of mouth ulcers and I feel quite de-hydrated, I can’t sleep properly or get comfortable when I sit down, I keep sniffing and blowing my nose and I’ve got a cold sore on my lip, and to top it all off I’ve got athlete’s foot, and a sprained ankle and a broken leg as well. That’s it really.

Friend: Uh huh? Have you seen a doctor?

Luke: Um, no. No I haven’t. That’s a good idea. I’ll do that then.

Friend: Yeah, you should do that because you sound really really really ill.

Luke: Oh ok, I’ll go to the doctor’s. Thanks for your advice.

Friend: That’s no problem. Have a nice day.

Luke: Thanks, you too. Bye bye *coughs* bye bye bye

Here’s the link to the BBC’s information page about swine flu. news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/health/8021958.stm

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  • I’ve just realized that the name of the pokemon Koffing (I used to watch pokemons in childhood)

    comes from the verb cough. :)

  • Anonymous

    Yes, Luke your voice sounds sexy, however the little cute teddy bear overtops the effect of your sexy voice!
    Thank you for all your episodes. They are not boring even if you don’t have to add some extras like your sexy voice.

  • Christa Bartels

    Hi Luke
    I really hope you can find a use for the transcript of this one. I have finished it now. I am really grateful for your really clever advices. Also you are still so young, I see that you are a real teacher! -:) Now,I am not doing transcripts mainly. I am now keen of making audios being inspired by the audio competiton. Once I got use to my voice nothing can stop me! -:)

    (6 months ago)
    Hello Luke,

    It’s quite a disgusting and childish episode. I really like it !! You were really funny.There are a lot of useful expressions, words. Thanks a lot.

    (6 months ago)
    Nice one, thanks for doing the podcast despite the cold

    (11 months ago)
    It was my first podcast and it was very funny!!! Thank you Luke!

    (11 months ago)
    It’s a very funny and interesting podcast Luke! I’m a pharmacist and I like a lot your descriptions of the symptoms ! Thanks

    Leonel Martins Bispo (over 1 year ago)
    You’re doing a great job! Congrats, Luke!

    (about 2 years ago)
    Your podcast´s really great! It´s exactly what I want to improve my vocabulary and listening comprehension. Thank you very much Mr. Thompson!

    (over 2 years ago)
    Hello, I’m really glad you like the podcast.
    Every episode has some vocabulary notes but some of them are on another page called “Luke’s English Blog”. Check for a link to Luke’s English Blog under older episodes.

    (over 2 years ago)
    i really thank you. your podcasts ae exellent. but i wonder why some of them dont have pdf. like this episode.

    (over 2 years ago)
    I am really thankful to you sir !!! May god bless you and your family .It is a good way to learn native english .

    (over 3 years ago)
    Thankyou for this, it’s intersting!

    (over 3 years ago)
    This is fun!

  • FreshMan

    thank you
    I can’t understand when to use To be under the weather, and when To be off colour ?
    is this the synonyms ?

    • Yes, they’re synonyms. They both mean that you generally feel a bit sick.
      “I’m not playing football this evening, I’m feeling a bit under the weather.”
      “I’m not playing football this evening, I’m a bit off colour.”

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    jajaja Luke, I didn´t realize you had such a sexy voice when you´re cold. Nice podcast, thanks xD